Cost: $200 per church. Register Today!
Advocacy – “Word & Deed” (Rev. Chrissy Williamson)
In church, we talk about the commission Jesus gave for us to bring the Good News to the ends of the earth. Readers of the New Testament would also quickly affirm that this Good News is carried forth in our words and our actions. As Christians trying our best to live faithful lives in today’s world, we have to ask ourselves: How am I to speak the Good News? and, How am I to act the Good News? Through ministries of mission and advocacy, people of faith and moral conscience are equipped to be both doers and speakers of good news. This breakout session will share stories from congregations that are exploring these ministries and will provide tips and best practices learned along the way. Come and join the conversation!
For the Good of the Community (Dr. Brian Foreman)
Often when we hear a phrase like “a rising tide lifts all boats,” and imagine the good work we can do. This could also lead to a messiah complex, even when are actions are well intentioned. Our time together will consider how we minister in our community through dynamic collaboration with resources we know and have yet to discover.
Practices for Navigating Cultural Shifts (Dr. Christopher Aho)
Many remember the “5-year Strategic Plan” binders that helped churches make marginal improvements which might lead to exponential gains. Back when these plans worked, they did so because the future greatly resembled the past.
These days, 5-Day planning seems impossible, let alone 5 years! The only certainty we have is that something unprecedented is just around the corner. In such an uncertain time, if we can’t plan, we should start with practice.
This workshop will provide some practical practices to help us both prepare for and shape our future in meaningful way. The future is uncertain, but how we practice our faith in it and through it does not have to be.
Navigating Divides in the Church – How to Do Ministry to and with a Church in Crisis (Chris Gambill)
Congregations long for unity, peace, and harmony but Jesus never promised this would be the norm. In fact, Jesus warned that following him would not be easy, and even divisive (e.g., in Luke 12). Many congregations have experienced some level of crisis for several years. And it is only getting worse. A crisis is both a time of intense difficulty, trouble or danger, and a decisive turning point (a change). Effective leaders understand how to manage the dangers while leaning into the opportunities that change is bringing. Navigating the present crisis well can set a congregation on a trajectory for thriving in the days ahead.
Affirming and Supporting Mental Health Needs in our Congregations (Dr. Tonya Armstrong)
Even in the midst of great faith and Godly wisdom, churches are not immune to mental health concerns. This session provides an opportunity to better understand mental illness, explore wellness, and learn concrete approaches to affirming and supporting greater mental health in our congregations. Dr. Armstrong will engage participants using didactic and interactive approaches.
Remaining Connected to your Child or Teen During Challenging Times (Elizabeth Worley)
It is easy to connect with our kids when things are going well. What about when things are not going well and we are worried about them? This session will offer strategies to help you remain connected to your child when they seem worried, stressed, angry or sad. Parenting our children when they struggle can feel so hopeless, yet when we make it through the challenge with our relationship intact, it can be so rewarding.
Local Church, Local Practices for Climate Change (Avery Davis Lamb)
After another season of record-breaking hurricanes, heat-waves, and wildfires, it has become clear that climate change is not an issue for the future, but for the present. The physical and spiritual impacts of climate change are affecting people and places everywhere, including in our own communities.
In this seminar we’ll engage what it looks like for our churches to engage in local practices of climate justice. We’ll engage questions including: In a time of climate change, what is the role of the local church? How can we engage in faithful practices of justice and hospitality in a time of climate change?
Join this seminar to learn how climate change is affecting communities in North Carolina, hear stories of churches responding faithfully, and explore how your church can engage in local practices of climate justice.
Together, we can help our communities weather the physical, social, and spiritual storms of the climate crisis.